THE 2016 DX OLYMPICS
Special Report From The BLANDX News Service
Filed by Phil Candaro
After a thirty-two year absence, International DX Olympics will be held once again. BLANDX will join with the Finnish International Shortwave Handbook (FISH), Bleene Radio Corporation, and Swedish DX Commando to sponsor the revivial of this once popular event.
The 2016 International DX Olympics will be held January 7 to 14, 2016 in Elbow Lake, Minnesota. The host club will be the Minnesota Union of Listening Enthusiasts. At least fifty different countries are expected to field teams, although teams from Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela and several other countries are expected to only compete in the indoor events. And those are also the only events that this reporter will be covering. Minnesota in January? No thank you.
These games, originally called Semaine Internationale des Sports et DX d'Hiver ("International Winter Sports and DX Week"), were first held in 1954 in France at the foot of Mont Blanc between 25 January and 5 February 1954. The US team, coached by Stanley Cushman, did well getting 12 Gold medals and 19 Silvers. The latter caused some controversy as there were only sixteen events, but accusations that the Italian and Greek judges were bribed were never proven.
Despite frequent irregularities the games continued to be held every four years until the scandals of the 1984 games shocked everyone. Held in Aalborg, Denmark, the 1984 games had been heralded as the beginning of a new age in cooperation among DX organizations worldwide. But the problems started before the games even began when the Canadians decided to boycott the event after Danish customs refused to let them bring in their moose mascot. (And matters weren't helped when the pan-Arab team was permitted to bring in Achmed the DX Camel.) Then the host Danish club attempted to distract their arch-rival Finns by sending twenty prostitutes to the Finns' quarters the night before the main events. The Finns didn't report this until the following day, after the night of debauchery caused them to finish dead last in several events they were favored to medal in. Finally, on the last day of the competition it was discovered that the East Germans had been sneaking men onto their women's teams. Minor problems included shouting matches between the Argentine and British teams and the Russian and Polish teams. All of these problems caused such outrage in the DX community that ANARC and EDXC agreed to cancel the games going forward.
ABOUT THE EVENTS
Here are just a few of the exciting events DXers worldwide can look forward to.
Men's Aerial and Women's Aerial - Tossing of antenna wire into trees.There are two medal categories in this exciting event.
- Aerial Aesthetics - Judges rate the contestants on a 10 point scale according to the technique. In both men's and women's, the Japanese are traditionally favored for the gold, but the Brazilian men's team looks exceptionally good.
- Aerial Distance & Height - Contestants are scored according to an algorthym of distance and height. This is a power event. Look for the Americans, Canadians, Finns, and Australians to all finish strong.
The 1500 Meter Long Track Antenna Haul - Contestants lay out a 1500 meter beverage antenna over a frozen lake, DX on it for three hours, and then haul it back in. Points are awarded for time taken to lay out and reel in the antenna, technique in doing same, and results of the three hours of DXing. Points are deducted if the contestant's foot falls through the ice into a lake, their butt gets covered in snow, they get frostbite or an asthma attack. Extra points are given for loggings of ex-porn stars, dekahuxters via Uzbekistan, and logging talking houses. As always, the Nordic teams and the Canadians are favored in this one although the Russians may also be competitive this year.
China Radio Slalom - Contestants attempt to tune through a randomly selected meter band without hearing China Radio International.
List Luging - Rapidly list logging stations as you tune across the 49 meter band. Extra points are awarded for performing a Triple Hauser (intentionally misspelling a word while mocking a religious broadcaster carrying sports programming).
Other exciting events includde Women's Compulsory Dentro Jamming, Four Man Pirate Chasing, Two Man Pirate Chasing, and the Bi-Dxathalon (DXing both LW beacons and SW Pirates). In a nod to DX Olympic history, the 2016 DX Olympics will be the last to include the Analog Frequency Interpolation competition. This will be replaced in 2020 with Excessive Digital Frequency Precision.